Report of the FESAC panel on a burning plasma program strategy to advance fusion energy

Stewart C. Prager, Charles Baker, David Baldwin, Herbert Berk, Riccardo Betti, James Callen, Vincent Chan, Bruno Coppi, Jill Dahlburg, Steven Dean, William Dorland, James Drake, Jeffrey Freidberg, Robert James Goldston, Richard Hawryluk, Richard Hazeltine, E. Bickford Hooper, Amanda Hubbard, Thomas Jarboe, Joseph JohnsonMartin Lampe, John Lindl, Grant Logan, Earl Marmar, Michael Mauel, Kathryn McCarthy, William McCurdy, Dale Meade, Wayne Meier, Stanley Milora, George Morales, Farrokh Najmabadi, Gerald Navratil, William Nevins, David Newman, Ronald Parker, Francis Perkins, Cynthia Phillips, Miklos Porkolab, Marshall Rosenbluth, Ned Sauthoff, Kurt Schoenberg, John Sheffield, Ronald Stambaugh, Edward Synakowski, George Tynan, Nermin Uckan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This panel was set up by the U.S. Department of Energy's Fusion Energy Sciences Advisory Committee in response to a request from the department to prepare a strategy for the study of burning fusion plasmas. Experimental study of a burning plasma has long been a goal of the U.S. science-based fusion energy program. There is an overwhelming consensus among fusion scientists that we are now ready scientifically, and have the full technical capability, to embark on this step. The fusion community is prepared to construct a facility that will allow us to produce this new plasma state in the laboratory, uncover the new physics associated with the fusion burn, and develop and test new technology essential for fusion power. Given this background, the panel has produced a strategy to enable the United States to proceed with this crucial next step in fusion energy science. The strategy was constructed with awareness that the burning plasma program is only one major component in a comprehensive development plan for fusion energy. A strong core science and technology program focused on fundamental understanding, confinement configuration optimization, and the development of plasma and fusion technologies essential to the realization of fusion energy. The core program will also be essential to the successful guidance and exploitation of the burning plasma program, providing the necessary knowledge base and scientific workforce.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)85-112
Number of pages28
JournalJournal of Fusion Energy
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2001

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Nuclear and High Energy Physics
  • Nuclear Energy and Engineering


  • Burning plasmas
  • Fusion
  • Fusion energy
  • Fusion strategy


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